Part of President Donald Trump’s appeal is that he applies a common sense line of thinking to the task at hand.
For example, it’s no secret that the federal government is broken and riddled with inefficiencies. Politicians have been calling attention to that very fact for years, but few do anything to actually solve the problem.
Enter Trump. He explains that the only way to fix things is to ‘drain the swamp,’ thereby instilling a different mindset to attacking the tasks set forth for government employees. Trump has also noted that he’ll be able to save taxpayers a pretty penny by doing so, and he’s doing all that he can to make it happen.
AP shares the news of one agency that should be at the top of the priority list.
More than 1 million Americans are awaiting a hearing to see whether they qualify for disability benefits from Social Security, with the average wait of nearly two years – longer than some of them will live.
All have been denied benefits at least once, as most applications are initially rejected.
But in a system where the outcome of a case often depends on who decides it, most people who complete the appeals process will eventually win benefits. The numbers come from data compiled by the Social Security Administration.
It’s no secret that there are people out there that abuse the system and clog it up unnecessarily, but that’s no excuse for having such a backlog that affects folks that are in dire need.
Some of the stories of folks that legitimately need benefits and are stonewalled in their efforts are nothing short of heartbreaking.
For some, the benefits come too late.
Chris Hoffman worked as a mason, laying bricks and tile and pouring concrete. He had terrible back pain for much of his life, but he kept working until a series of heart attacks. He applied for Social Security disability benefits in 2014 but was denied. He appealed to an administrative law judge.
In November, Hoffman died at 58, following his fourth heart attack. Ten months later, the judge ruled that he was entitled to benefits.
When confronted with the alarming numbers or legitimate tales of woe, Social Security officials will quickly shift the conversation to a lack of resources or lament that there’s not enough people to do the job.
While it’s unfortunate that they view their jobs as so challenging, the bottom line is that they need to be done. Excuses don’t cut it out in the real world, as organizations that rely on them for their survival will eventually go by the wayside.
That’s not an option for Social Security and other federal agencies. Hence, the defeatist and lackadaisical mindset is ingrained, and the problems are only further exacerbated.
Draining the swamp has gone from a political talking point to an obvious necessity, and Social Security should be at the top of the overhaul list.